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Parotidectomy - Multi Specialty Hospital | Bangalore Orthopaedic and Surgical Hospital | BOSH | Bangalore

Parotidectomy is the removal of part or all of the parotid gland on one side of the face.

  • medicalSuperficial parotidectomy: The parotid gland is artificially divided into a superficial and deep lobe by the facial nerve that runs in a set plane in the middle of the gland. A superficial parotidectomy requires removal of the parotid gland superficial to the plane of the facial nerve. This is the most common type of parotid surgery. A less than complete superficial parotidectomy, but one that has still removed the entire tumor with negative margin, may also be referred to as a partial parotidectomy.
  • medicalTotal parotidectomy: This requires removal of the entire parotid gland, including the superficial and deep lobe. If the facial nerve is not involved, this will require identifying all of the branches and carefully retracting them out of the way as meticulous dissection is performed.
  • medicalRadical parotidectomy: This procedure is a total parotidectomy, along with resection of the facial nerve. An extended radical parotidectomy will involve removal of additional structures as well, such as the temporal bone or the skin of face overlying the parotid gland.


The patient will be put completely to sleep with general anesthesia. In some cases, the surgeon might choose to use a special monitor that makes a noise when the facial nerve (including certain branches) is stimulated. A parotidectomy is done via an incision just in front of the ear in a natural skin crease that extends down into a natural skin crease in the neck. This allows the surgeon to hide the scar as much as possible rather than making an incision directly in the middle of face. When the tumor is in the deep lobe of the parotid gland, a different or additional approach might be required.

At the end of the procedure, the surgeon might place a small drain temporarily coming out of the skin. This will drain any fluid and/or blood that accumulates in the space where the surgery was performed. When the time is right (one day to a few days), the drain will be removed by the surgical team. This takes only a few seconds. There will be a little discomfort, but it will go by quickly. Depending on whether any additional procedures were done, patient will go home the same day or within a few days of the surgery. Patient should be able to drink and eat very soon after the surgery. There is little pain associated with this procedure, but will probably be given a little pain medication anyway.